Truth & Post-Truth

Ref: C2344517

To some ‘post truth’ means freedom from the tyranny of rationality and experts. To others it is another word for ‘lies’. This course gives students the opportunity to gain a better understanding of different meanings of truth and to develop and practice philosophical and rhetorical skills, which should enable them to evaluate claims that we now live in a 'post-truth age'. The course will cover 1. what we mean by 'true' in everyday language 2. Definitions of 'post truth' 3. Different philosophical ways of understanding truth 4. How the proponents of post truth and ‘fake news’ understand truth 5. How to analyze arguments philosophically 6. whether rationality is the opposite of emotion 7. The relationship between argument and rhetoric 8. how to apply the techniques of philosophical analysis to 'post truth' claims

Course aim

to give students the opportunity to develop and practice philosophical and rhetorical skills so that they understand truth and post truth better and can evaluate claims that we now live in a ‘post truth age’

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • You will need to be able to follow links to join our WEA live video learning platform: WEA Zoom. If you’d like to understand more about our video learning platform, Zoom please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline and http://bit.ly/ZoomSpec
  • You will need your own personal email address so that you’re able to login to the WEA’s digital learning platform: WEA Canvas. You will need to be able to understand how to follow URL links to pages on the internet. If you want to understand more about Canvas please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline
  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • explain how 'true' is used in everyday language
  • give a definition of 'post truth'
  • summarize at least two different philosophical ways of understanding truth
  • explain how to identify good and bad arguments
  • analyse and evaluate at least one example of a 'post truth' claim

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas will be used to provide resources or to support lessons, enable assessment, provide learner feedback and for other activities for individuals away from the course. If you want to understand more about our digital learning platform please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline
  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning
  • You may be asked to undertake additional work in your own time to support your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning

What else do I need to know?

  • What you need: You will need an internet connection, speakers, a microphone and a webcam so that you can use our video learning platform, Zoom. If you’d like to understand more Zoom please visit: http://bit.ly/ZoomSpec
  • You will also need access to the internet outside of your sessions. You could do this using a smart phone, tablet, laptop or a desktop computer (at home or through a library etc.).
  • You will need a personal email address to join the WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas so that you can receive resources, record your progress and achievement and to work with others and share ideas. If you want to understand more about our digital learning platform please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required
  • You may wish to have a look at some introductory study sources B Dupre, 50 Philosophy Ideas, chs 2, 4, 6 S Blackburn, Think (OUP 1999), ch 1 N Fearn, Philosophy (Atlanta 2005), ch 5

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Progress to a course with another provider
  • You could progress to Higher Education courses. Follow link to the PEARL website for information http://pearl.open.ac.uk/

Download full course information sheet

Truth & Post-Truth

Conditions

As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you enrol. Please check the details below to ensure you meet the basic eligibility critiera:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2020
  • You declare that the address you provide is correct and that you will provide evidence of this and your eligibility to live and work in the UK
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

Not sure or have further questions? Contact courseenquiries@wea.org.uk

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